Saturday, January 06, 2007

Thinking of others: two stories of brave women

Dear Mia, you grow strong and give us lots of big smiles and laughs. We are so happy you are happy and I hope you will grow up like your mom to speak your mind and go where your heart takes you. So I wanted to share with you two remarkable stories from the paper today of brave women who made a difference. Love Daddy.

"Life in New Orleans turns tragic for Canadians" tells the story of Helen Hill, 36-year-old animator and filmmaker, who set up the Halifax chapter of Food Not Bombs with husband Dr. Paul Gailiunas while they lived in Dalhousie and who moved to New Oleans in 2001 to make a difference. They inspired their neighbors with their love and generosity. Paul worked with a medical clinic for the poor run by the Daughters of Charity religious order and Helen was part of the community of artists, poets and anarchists. Paul was a musician in his spare time and left Canada to practise medicine in a Third World environment (in the US!). On Thursday Helen was killed by a bullet through her throat and Paul was shot 4 times protecting their two year old son Francis. “They came back to New Orleans because they wanted to be part of the reconstruction and they wanted to come to help,” said Helen's brother. “They are wonderful people, two bright spots in New Orleans,” said Sheri Branch, who was taking care of Francis while Dr. Gailiunas was being treated in hospital. “They gave us hope that people could live together.”

"Amid the intifada, a courageous friendship" tells the story of Tali Fahima who journeyed to Jenin to meet with Zakaria Zubeidi, the local head of the al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade after he survived an assassination attempt. “I went to meet with the enemy. I broke the walls that the state built. And I'm not a lefty; I come from the Israeli mainstream. It's something that really scared them.” Tali was freed Wednesday after 28 months in prison and she intends to work from Jaffa to support the children's theatre in Jenin that Zakaria was part of as a kid.

No comments: